You hit the wall.
You know what I’m talking about. You ran out of energy on a long training day or in a race. What was wrong? You didn’t fuel right or you went too hard… or maybe both.
How do you fix it? Practice of course!
We all need to spend extra time practicing our race day nutrition strategy. Even sours course racing requires fuel to get to the finish line, so the question is… how do we do that?
I think weekends are a great time to work on your fueling. Here’s how!
1. Pre fuel
This is something you should do for every workout, not just weekend ones. The only exception to this could be if you are experimenting with fasted workouts. Even then, your big days need to be training ground for your race day nutrition. What are you going to eat for breakfast on race day? Do that in your training! Try it out. Take notes. See what works and what doesn’t. Don’t forget to note the timing too. Oatmeal takes longer to digest than peanut butter and jelly with chocolate milk!
This is what most people think of for their nutrition strategy, but it is really only the middle pice of the puzzle. You know it’s hard to put a puzzle together if you he middle instead of the edges right?
Look at what your race demands are going to be. If it’s short, you may not need anything or just a simple hydration mix. Going long? You need something else to keep you going. Remember to look at hydration and nutrition. Read the labels and see how many calories and how many grams of crabs you are getting. Aim for 30-60g of carbs per hour, but don’t be afraid to go outside of that.
Again, take notes and see what worked and what didn’t. Try it out with bike rides, runs, and bricks so you can see how your body responds in each workout.
The often neglected refueling. (Except on race day when there is pizza and chocolate milk and who knows what else waiting at the finish line!) You need to refuel so your body to repair itself and be ready for the next go-round.
There should be two parts to refueling: immediate recovery and your next meal. Get something in your system as soon as you can when you finish. My go to is chocolate milk! Then, make sure you eat a good meal in the next few hours.
Again, take notes and see how you feel. Do you feel tired for the rest of the day? Eat some more! Your brain isn’t getting enough glucose since it’s sending it all to your muscles.
If you practice this in the 12 or so weeks leading up your race, you will not only be better prepared to execute on race day, but you will go into the race stronger because your workouts will have been more productive!
What have you tried for your nutrition plan? What worked? What didn’t? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter!